A fire chief from Pennsylvania has apologized for calling Steelers coach Mike Tomlin a “no-good n*gger” after his team did not come out onto the field for the national anthem during this Sunday’s game against the Chicago Bears.
CBS Pittsburgh reports that Paul Smith, the chief of the volunteer fire department in Cecil Township, Pennsylvania, posted on Facebook that Tomlin “just added himself to the list of no-good n*ggers” for his decision to not take the field during the anthem.
“Yes, I said it,” Smith added afterward.
Many people in the town reacted angrily to Smith’s post, and said it was inappropriate for a town official to spout racism.
“I’m completely upset, especially for a town like this, coming from the fire chief, that’s disrespectful in my eyes,” said Cecil Township resident Dylan Pareso. “I don’t agree with it one bit.”
Smith apparently realized that he’d made a big mistake, as he quickly sent a message to CBS Pittsburgh apologizing for his racist rant.
“I am embarrassed at this,” he said. “I want to apologize. I was frustrated and angry at the Steelers not standing the anthem. This had nothing to do with my Fire Department. I regret what I said.”
Watch CBS Pittsburgh’s report on the incident below.